The previous Vietnamese Scouting National Conferences, BSA were all held at the Philmont Training Center in Cimarron, New Mexico, in 1999, 2003 and 2011. By popular request during this past year, the National BSA council, National Vietnamese Scouting Committee and the Las Vegas Area council, BSA are hosting the 4th Vietnamese Scouting National Conference at the Las Vegas Area Council BSA office from Thursday, February 27– Sunday, March 1, 2020.
Formerly Boulder Dam Area Council, the Las Vegas Area Council serves Scouts in Nevada, California and Arizona. The Boulder Dam Area Council (#328) was started in 1944 with fewer than 500 youth. The former council offices were in cramped spaces on the UNLV campus, but in 2002 they moved into a new facility. The Donald W. Reynolds Scouting Resource Center was dedicated on Friday, May 3, 2002. The new facilities are located at 7220 South Paradise Rd, Las Vegas. The name of the council was changed to Las Vegas Area Council in 2005. It currently serves youth in Clark and Nye counties of southern Nevada, southeastern California, and western Arizona.
The Donald W. Reynolds Scouting Resource Center includes a Scout Park, where participants of this conference are camping for the weekend. Some will be staying in local hotels, Airbnb and at friends’. And of course they will be enjoying the extra-curricular activities that Las Vegas has to offer.
The conference objectives include developing a comprehensive Vietnamese Scouting program in the U.S.A. by continue to identify Vietnamese-American population in the U.S. to start new units/Liên Đoàn to serve Vietnamese-American communities. Utilization of BSA resources including high adventure facilities such as the Summit Bechtel Reserve in West Virginia, Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico, the Florida National High Adventure Sea Base and Northern Tier high adventure base. Scholarships is another pool of financial resources that are available for Vietnamese-American youth.
The 75 conference participants will also participate in the planning and development of program and activities including organizing future Trai Tung Nguyen (Wood Badge) courses, Leadership Position Specific Training, Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills (IOLS), Trai He Nganh Thieu (Scouts BSA summer camp), Trai Khai Pha (Vietnamese National Venturing SuperCamp), Trai Quoc Gia (National Vietnamese Jamboree), Junior Leadership training, Trai Vung (Regional camps), and future Vietnamese Scouting National Conferences.
The Vietnamese Scouting National Conference is organized under the leadership of Tr. Lam Nguyen of Sacramento, California. His planning team consists of over 20 Scout leaders from around the country, teleconferencing over the past several months to create the conference agenda and promote the event. “We are very excited to see over seventy leaders from multiple generations coming together to build a vision and plan forward for the Vietnamese-American Scouting community in the United States of America. We are at a pivotal point in history as we strive to strengthen our partnership with the BSA and provide a foundation of leadership and service to our boys and girls,” says Nguyen, “At this conference, our leaders will bridge the generational gap to preserve relevant Vietnamese traditions in our Lien Doan while providing our youth with a solid advancement program with the BSA. This will continue to serve as an effective model to Scouting programs around the country as we continue to grow our Family Scouting Program.”